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Reviews of Lupa

 

13/07/2007 Mike Butler - Metro life /Jazz

Antima Abbamonte is something of an exotic. Her chosen name Lupa, or she-wolf, has associations of pagan magic and ancient Rome, savagery and maternity. It takes a lot of living up to, yet Abbamonte inhibits it with flair. Musically, she fluctuates between melodic psychedelic-tinged originals and radical makeovers of jazz standards. Her life is as unique as her music. Born and raised in Milan, as a youngster Lupa was student of classical piano and a child fashion model for Vogue. She studied at the Birmingham School of Speech and Drama (now Birmingham School of Acting), and England’s second city became her adopted home, with forays to Los Angeles and Italy, where she worked with the anarchist farceur Dario Fo’. An encounter at an LA party attended by Prince was crucial: henceforth her creative energies were exclusively focused on music.
House Of Blue, her debut album, crosses language and genre. A woozy dreamscape, conjured by lush meshes of electronic sound, contrasts with Lupa’s pure voice and, indeed, with Graeme Hamilton and Bryan Corbett’s stark, beautiful trumpets. The glittering setting can’t altogether disguise the fact that Lupa’s desperate love songs – always treading the thin line between tenderness and torment – spring directly form the torch song tradition. She’s an accomplished actor and singer too, permanently on the brink yet never sacrificing control. Her breathy sensitivity and impressive scat singing proclaim a natural jazz singer.
Mike Butler - Metro – Metro Life / Jazz - July 2007

 

18/02/2006 Roger Trapp - The Independent

This Italian-born singer treads a path that takes its cue from Jazz and Asian underground, as well as left-field pop. This tour sees her introduce the pianist and saxophonist Alfonso Deidda. Joining them is British trumpeter Bryan Corbett.
Roger Trapp 'Jazz & Blues' THE FIVE BEST GIGS (n.4 Lupa)

 

15/02/2006 Peter Bacon - Birmingham Post

There are not many jazz performers who go on tour these days, but Birmingham-based singer Lupa is one of them.
Aside from gigs further afield during February, she has fitted in a clutch of them in the Midlands, and they are all within the next week. She fronts a very classy band which has Alfonso Deidda on piano and saxophones, Roger Inniss on bass, Bryan Corbett on trumpet, and Miles Levin on drums.

 

18/08/2005 Peter Bacon - Birmingham Post

Lupa, meaning she wolf, is the stage name of Birmingham-based, Italian-born Antima Abbamonte and reflects her desire to project a dangerous and slightly otherwordly image. That is certainly there in the music too...
Peter Bacon 'Great depth and manifold pleasures'(jazz cd reviews)

 

19/08/2004 Mike Butler - Metro News

An extraordinary life produces astonishing music. The Milan born Lupa (Antima Abbamonte) comes from a family of artists. From child model in Vogue to actress in the troupe of anarchic playwright Dario Fo', she seemed destined for unique distinction. Since 1996, Lupa has operated out of Birmingham, forging links with creative musicians, songwriters, producers and technicians within the city and the wider international scene. Her name Lupa (the she-wolf) is apt as sexiness and scariness co-exist in her breathy voice... Lupas band is to performe tonight... jazz musicians and wolves have one thing in common: they come out at night and strike with ruthless efficiency. Pure lycanthropic pleasure.
Jazz / Life

 

06/10/2003 Mr. J.Simpson - The Jazz Rag

After the impact of her appearance at this years Birmingham International Jazz Festival, Italian singer Lupa is increasingly busy on the city jazz scene..with influences from classical to Reggae via Latin songs and French chansons, Lupa takes a fresh approach to Jazz singing


 

01/07/2003 Mr. J.Simpson Birmingham Jazz Fest

Charismatic Lupa is a sensational Italian singer with a new fresh and fascinating approach to Jazz singing that never loses sight of the roots. Warm, enticing, intimate, always rhythmic, she draws on surprising but always appropriate influences. Goodbye Pork Pie Hat, Lush Life, Twisted, Parker's Mood, Moody's Mood4Love, Invitation... are Lupas staple diet, but French chanson, Reggae and Latin have their place as well. Lupa is delightful and charming. She is a prolific songwriter and producer and has an uncanny knack to rearranging jazz standards to make them sound totally new. Lupa has a unique and unusual talent.
The 19th HMV Birmingham International Jazz Festival - 2003

 

30/07/2002 Roland Zwikker - deo.com

Born and bred in Milan, the rich capital of northern Italy, Antima Abbamonte has roots well imbedded in the arts. Her father was a talented painter and her mother a young stage actress. Antima started playing the piano at three and sang folk songs with her grandmother. Even her brother wrote songs. At the age of 19 her love for music drove her to England, mainly because of the rich history of pop music, but also because of the language.

She describes herself as a jazz fanatic, but her musical taste is eclectic.. Her ideal seems to be a mixture of the performer, artiste and songwriter. An all-rounder like Tori Amos we reckon. Although Lupa was always on the verge of breaking free, she took a long road across a lot of different spheres in the universe of the arts. She started modeling at young age and when she was older she moved on to the stage. Performing in front of a crowd energized her and got the creative juices flowing. Through translations from Italian into English for her theatre group, she started writing for herself. And why not, producing an original work of art gives a buzz like nothing else

She had come to a key point in her journey, the moment where Lupa She-Wolf comes out of the undergrowth. As Antima says: Lupa is in me. Lupa is me. This extraordinary name comes from the English writer Dick Hebdige. He describes a beast both maternal and savage; a creator and nurturer of life, but also a destroyer of life. The she-wolf being the mother of Rome, the beast that nurtured Romulus and Remus the founders of the city; ushering in the glory days of Rome. The constant longing in Italy for the reliving of these days led to Italys downfall in World War II, when the ideal of Rome was destroyed once and for all. The state of affairs in the country after the War ultimately led Lupa away from her home country. All these contradictions are captured in the name and the music of Lupa She-Wolf. The end of one life and the beginning of a new one.

Vito, 'I Could Have Loved You More the sound track to her promo video is a talking biography. A weird combination of dreamy, dark pop, interwoven with bits of interviews. She has basically created the soundtrack for her own life-story. Over a background with melodic pop psychedelica, Lupa is heard in the form of a mist-like melody and as a clear storyteller. The vocals lure you away from reality, while the spoken words describe the present of an era goneby. Its a weird experience listening to an interview mixed into a song, you cant help listening to the story and being intrigued by Lupas off-kilter artistic vision.
'Hypnotic Atmospheric pop songs'
Top 5 chart of the month:
N.2 Lupa - Vito 'I could have loved you more'

 

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